large and small, brown teapots

Miscellanea : #WeekendCoffeeShare on Saturday, 9 June

Backyard Gazebo

Welcome to my back yard! This afternoon, I am enjoying a pot of “ti kuan yin goddess of mercy” oolong tea from Stash Tea online. Bribing myself to drink less coffee to cut back on the carbohydrates. While I drink tea “straight”, I make my coffee from homemade, cold-brew concentrate added to whole milk. It’s a meal in itself; I am trying to limit myself to once or twice a day.

If we were having coffee together, today, I would invite you outdoors. I am sitting in a camp chair that’s stored in my gazebo. It is under the bending branches of the cotoneaster bushes and out of the direct sunlight.

The dogs seem to like the sunshine. My previous two dogs (Ladd and Samantha) were black cocker spaniels, and both of them enjoyed “sunbathing” also.

Out in the Sun

The week has been a quiet one. On Wednesday, we traveled to the home town for our semi-annual dental appointments. Al got two fillings while I waited, since there was an open time slot in their schedule and it saved us making an extra trip. I have orders to floss more often, please, and brush at the gum line.

Al ordered blinds for the workshop windows. He finished installing them, this afternoon, and then headed out to do some shopping (undoubtedly for the workshop) and coffee at his favorite restaurant. I have gotten the laundry washed and dried, but not put away. the kitchen is looking pretty good. Using plastic utensils and paper plates and bowls help a lot, except for the cooking necessaries, helped a lot with that. Paper plates in a large stack. The stores must be thinking “picnic”!

Incoming Weather

I am seeing definite storm-type clouds to the north-northwest. Hot as it is, I should expect there might be rain, tonight. The backyard neighbors have put up chicken wire on their side of our fence, and so we are not enjoying many visits from the neighborhood rabbits. I miss them very much.

We took extreme measures to try to protect the rabbits from trying to get through the fence at the break where the gate leaves a gap, here in the back yard. The first day that the chicken wire was placed to block that gap, a rabbit trying to outrace our dogs went through and ended up trapped between our metal fence and the chicken wire, which was too tall for him to get himself out of without a terrible struggle to reach the top, clawing at the chicken wire.

Blocking the Way

We have bolted a board to the gate posts high enough that the rabbits will not try to get through, there. we have left a space beneath the front gate where they can come and go. Our new neighbor to the south is planning to put up a privacy fence between his yard and ours, and so there will be no place from which to watch the rabbits except for between our houses and across the street through the front-room window.

The one concern that I do have is that the spouse of a family member has entered hospice care, this week. Not unexpected, but still…even the inevitable can be jarring.

I have started going to bed earlier, which, oddly, is resulting in my sleeping later into the morning. And so, I must get up promptly to get good photographs of the wildflowers.

I have enjoyed this time visiting with you. I hope that you have a wonderful weekend and beyond!

Best wishes!


Weekend Coffee Share is hosted by Alli at  her Eclectic Alli blog. and the InLinkz link is here, where you will find links to other Weekend Coffee Share participants.


#WeekendCoffeeShare on 2 July 2017: A long week

If we were getting together for coffee, this evening, we could sit in the back yard and visit for a while. Until it gets dark and the illegal fireworks and noise makers start up, again. Some years it is difficult to breathe because of the combustion byproducts. I have come in with the Scampers, where quiet will prevail for a while longer.

If you’d like coffee (drip or cold brew), I could offer you a muffin to go with it, tonight. A neighbor brought over a box of muffins and cookies, late this morning, and my husband had me put some away in the freezer. The wonders of the microwave! Instantly thawed muffins and fresh-frozen fruit!

There have been people in my week. On Monday I met with the grief counselor, and I enjoyed talking with her. I am more determined, now, to try establishing some social contacts that involve in-person interaction. It does feel different, although mostly I think it’s not having a lot of time to ponder how to respond and what I might want to say in the course of a give-and-take conversation. (No, I don’t Skype or do instant messaging, either.)

And toward the end of the week, an Internet friend dropped by in the midst of a few days of visiting at the home of relatives here in town. She’s from California, but travels a lot, and couldn’t pass up the chance to add North Dakota to her list of states she’s been in. And, our having known each other for years through the SF Poetry Assn., it followed. I even got to fix a light lunch for the two of us, since Al had volunteered for an extra shift at the marksmanship center over the noon hour. It is remarkable, how I felt that I had known her practically forever, and was comfortable visiting. (I had previously bought her recent poetry book [then lost it, and ordered another, then found the first, again] and was happy to have her sign it for me. Just the one copy.) 

I’ve gotten both of the manuscripts for the two prequel “Lady Astronaut” books (by M.R. Kowal—won the bid in the Con-or-Bust online fund-raiser auction), read one, and am starting on the second. Lovely! I look forward to reading the final version, next year. I very much enjoyed the

This weekend’s splurge was beef liver. Yes. Really! Bought enough for three meals, cooked it up with onions, and ate Meal the First for today at lunch.

I must mention (and would take you on a very brief tour of) the woodworking shop that we are building in the back yard. Al has painted a “test” board of the siding we’ve chosen for the shop with the color that we’ve chosen. The primer is oil based, which I can’t be around at all, but it’s got a short drying time, and the outer layer will be a different (safe to breathe) sort of paint. Two thirds of the building will be Al’s woodworking space, and the other third will be a multi-purpose hobby room.

Just Looking Around

It’s time for our local amateur radio Sunday Night Net, and Al’s net control, this evening. I should sign off, now, so I don’t miss all of it. I’m glad that you stopped in for a visit.

Best wishes for the coming week!

P.S. I hope you’ll have time to stop by Emily’s blog, who is the current host of Weekend Coffee Share:, where you’ll find “a big ol’ announcement” and the link button to other people’s Weekend Coffee Share posts.

#WeekendCoffeeShare | Life is Good | 16July16

If we were having coffee this afternoon, I could offer cold Toddy coffee, Folgers medium drip brew, and several kinds of black tea. We’ve got some half-and-half, sugar and honey to add. Also, I made up a pitcher of lemonade, last night, and still have enough for three or four servings.

If we were having coffee together, this weekend, I would share some progress made concerning my parents. Well, not exactly, but I did have the chance to visit by email with my brother who’s not local and working on an ongoing project (he’s an independent consultant, having taken early retirement and now picking the jobs he wants to take on). He and the brother in my parents’ home town (and his wife, who drops in daily on the parents) are to speak together about options, available and/or acceptable to everyone concerned.

I am sharing some of the photo art I contrived from one of the pictures that I took this morning in the wildflower garden. That would be the flower garden with blue wild flax, a pair of wild sunflowers, and common thistle (most of which I have photographed and then pulled up by the roots).

This fall I must prepare the garden for planting after the ragweed pollen season, but before the hard freeze, since the spring tree pollen is what really lays me flat. Although the ragweed in the fall gives me the most lung congestion. I’ve a whole 6 oz. of wildflower seeds that never went into the ground, because we have been busy fighting the bindweed, thistles, and other unwanted (and some still unidentified) weeds that came in with the fresh dirt that was brought in last summer to bank up the sides of the house. Which reminds me to mention that we have had heavy rains, but no basement seepage, this year, and so we are trusting that remediation measures will not have been for nothing.

The ringer on the telephone in my mother’s room had been turned on low, but is now turned up, again. When I called this week, on Friday, the phone was answered, but by my brother (whose wife drops in daily to visit with our parents and do errands). He promised to let our mother and father know that I had called. So, no chance to visit with either parent, but at least I know that they are okay. He was doing some chores and visiting with them when I called.

As for myself, all was well for most of the week. These past few days I hadn’t enough strength to do the miles on the exercise bike (I’d pedaled 3.5 miles on each of the past two or three days). I did practice the piano until today. Although the pollen count is extremely low, we haven’t had a lot of rain for a few days, so I guess there was other stuff in the air. I may start splitting my night, so that I am up at 5:30 or 6:00 in the morning to get outside and exercise before people start mowing their lawns or drying clothes to see if that helps. Today I’ve taken a lot of naps, taken photographs and played a bit with the computer photo editing software.

At eleven o’clock I prepared and ate a large salad that had lots of mixed vegetables in with the salad greens, as well as three hard-boiled eggs, along with diluted cranberry juice. Then, a nap for between two and three hours.

I’ve sat in the back yard with the dogs, but taken no more photographs. I’m currently rereading Scepters, by L. E. Modesitt, Jr. Thanks to the Apple iBook settlement, I have an extra $100 of book money, and so I replaced the four hardcover volumes of Anne Bishop’s The Others series.

I had given my first print editions to a friend, but I am not a collector, and so I do not care if the books are not from the first printing. Book five comes out, I believe, in March 2017. I wonder with each book that comes out whether the character that bears my name will finally come to a bloody end; she has rated only mentions, but not appearances or dialogue. Ah, well! She is being useful in the story’s background.

I always preorder books I want in my permanent physical book library; the hardcovers seem less toxic, once they have aired out. I think it’s because the paper does not deteriorate so rapidly.

I’m glad that you’ve joined me, today, for the Weekend Coffee Share. I trust that you will also visit Diana’s WeekendCoffeeShare post, where you will also find a Links button that leads to the links for other participants’ blog entries. I think there also are hash tags on Facebook and Twitter.

Many thanks!


P.S. Do you have a “comfort” author to whose books you retreat in order to come to a point of rest?

Pulse=72 bpm, SpO2=94%
Exercise: Resting


Awake, now | The Second Cup of Coffee

I woke up, this morning, at a little after 9 o’clock. Again, I slept quite soundly. A bit of trouble breathing immediately upon wakening, but improving.

Yesterday, I wrote my poem for the Poetry 101 Rehab weekly challenge, and on Monday, my weekly “haiku” for RonovanWrites. My poem and bio are up at the SFPA Halloween Poetry Reading page (Halloween Awakening).

Now that I have picked out the computer I want to order, my blood oxygen level is down, and my pulse rate is up, and so I am waiting to submit my order until I’m feeling calm about it and sure that I won’t make mistakes in the ordering process. Or change my mind.

Patience are us? No, not really!

And I have a terrible time with decision making, sometimes.

Sunday Morning Coffee Break

Good morning! I’m glad you stopped by! Things are a bit of a mess, here, and I’m happy to take a break to visit with you. This morning, I put the coffee on and decided to pair it with a square of dark chocolate for myself (90% cocoa, and not enough information to know if that’s mostly the cocoa butter).

If we were having coffee together, this morning, it would be in the back-yard gazebo. My kitchen is cluttered, because I had spent the evening getting ready to make yogurt (took the jars out of the incubator at 9:00 a.m.). Even though I hadn’t finished washing up after meals during the day. I took two rather long naps, when perhaps I shouldn’t have. Just as I had put the hot milk to cooling and had something to eat, my husband got home and wanted to go out to supper. And so we did. He ate pancakes, and I had my first banana split in many years. Hurrah for proper menu labeling! Takes a lot of guesswork out of ordering.

I would like to mention the latest email I received from my mother. I learned from her that my father’s youngest brother, who is only six years or so older than me, is in the hospital and unconscious. Wayne has been in a nursing/retirement home for at least three years. I worry about my father, even though he seems to take the losses in stride and was quite cheerful, although tired, when we drove to their home town for a visit, last month. It has been little more than a year ago that my youngest sister was buried.

By and large, this has been a good week. I have written a nice lot of poetry, and one of the three poems I submitted, this year, was published in Star*Line. (The other two were sent back with requests for revisions, but I have not yet gotten back to that.)

Do you keep a “To Do” list? I suspect that I may have, but I have not seen any for a while, now. Sometimes I worry that my memory is failing me.

I’d love to chat longer, but Al’s awake, now. I’m going to make scrambled eggs and serve him breakfast in bed. 🙂